Australia is all ready to take on their cricket rivals in the 2nd test of the four test matches series in Hyderabad starting from Saturday March 2, 2013. Tourists should solve their problems against spin if they want to keep their hopes alive on Indian soil. Earlier India beat Australia and won by 8 wickets that includes MS Dhoni’s brilliant 224 with a strike rate of 84.53. Though India is looking solid with its batting line-up, Australian batsman Shane Watson has said his side would have to play at their absolute best to win the second Test against India starting here Saturday. An additional spinner is on the card but the selectors will have the final say before the test. He also believes that the team would have to play its aggressive brand of cricket to do well in the series, after losing the first Test at Chennai.
India picked three spinners to expose Australia’s inexperience against spin in Chennai and it worked as they recorded a resounding eight-wicket victory inside 90 minutes of the fifth day. Ravi Ashwin, Harbhajan Singh and Ravi Jadeja were the tormentors-in-chief and we can expect more of the same in Deccan. Virat Kohli and MS Dhoni did the hard work with the willow. Billions in India are still drooling over Dhoni’s double century. Not so long ago they wanted him sacked. Now he looks as though he will consolidate his position at number six.
Australia need to learn a new one if they are to succeed in India, and quickly. They are ingenues at playing spin in this part of the world and only intensive brainwashing will do the trick. It was no surprise. In our preview for the first Test we highlighted this weakness and it will not be solved by Test two. There could be improvement later on in the series, though. Michael Clarke, as one would expect given his experience, was immense. Moises Henriques, one of the new breed, showed admirable qualities. But Australia need more from Shane Watson, another senior player. Watson may have to do some bowling if Australia drop a seamer and bring in Xavier Doherty, another spinner.
When England defeated India a few weeks back, they did it with two spinners. But even if Australia remedy that by pairing Nathan Lyon and Doherty, they may not avoid enbarrassment. It is often forgotten that Indian batsmen can play average spinners – and Lyon and Doherty have more to prove to not be branded as such – in their sleep. It is half the battle. The other half is playing it in your sleep yourselves. Australia have night terrors at the moment. Of their 20 wickets to fall in Chennai, all of them fell to spin. That is extraordinary, even if the pitches are dustier at the end of the Indian season.
Match Timings: Mar 02, 2013 (09:30 local | 04:00 GMT | 09:30 IST)
India (probable) 1 Virender Sehwag, 2 M Vijay, 3 Cheteshwar Pujara, 4 Sachin Tendulkar, 5 Virat Kohli, 6 Ravindra Jadeja/Ajinkya Rahane, 7 MS Dhoni (capt & wk), 8 R Ashwin, 9 Harbhajan Singh, 10 Ishant Sharma, 11 Pragyan Ojha.
Australia (probable) 1 David Warner, 2 Ed Cowan, 3 Phillip Hughes, 4 Shane Watson, 5 Michael Clarke (capt), 6 Matthew Wade (wk), 7 Moises Henriques, 8 Peter Siddle, 9 Mitchell Starc, 10 James Pattinson, 11 Nathan Lyon.